Code2003 is a rip-off

Richard Wordingham richard.wordingham at
Sat Aug 15 10:13:09 CDT 2020

On Sat, 15 Aug 2020 21:39:10 +0800
John Knightley via Unicode <unicode at> wrote:

> On 2020-08-15 19:33, Richard Wordingham via Unicode wrote:
> > On Fri, 14 Aug 2020 23:23:30 +0000
> > James Kass via Unicode <unicode at> wrote:
> >   
> >> There's a font called Code2003 which is available for download on
> >> various web sites.  Most of its glyphs were stolen from my fonts
> >> Code2000 and Code2001.  Several ranges included in the font which
> >> were not covered by my fonts were likely stolen from elsewhere.
> >> For example, for the range "Miscellaneous Symbols and
> >> Pictographs", its "developer" simply stole the glyphs from the
> >> Unicode chart for that range as found on the Unicode web site.
> >> (Although some of those glyphs were modified by mirroring or
> >> slight rotation.  Please see attached graphic.)  
> > 
> > Have you read the legal defence at
> > 
> > ?
> > I think the editor's arguments are wrong, but I think 'rip-off' is
> > too strong a word.
> >   
> There are many stronger words that one could use, James has be very 
> restrained here considering the thousands of hours invested. It is
> far to common that people ignore the licenses of software. Many of us
> can recount similar events. Such behaviour is very disheartening for 
> independent developers.

The first point here is that James is not being robbed of income.
There does not seem to be any way for the general public to licence the
font(s) from him.

Now, James is still being given credit for the glyphs.  That doesn't
seem to be true for other glyph creators, e.g. Alif Silpachai for the
Tai Tham glyphs.  Alif's font is free as in free beer, not as in free

There is a potential loss of reputation to James as a font can be a lot
more than just glyphs.  The shaping has mostly gone missing, and he may
be criticised for the various consequent shortcomings, whereas there was
a time when Code2000 was the best Devanagari font I had available on
my machine.

The final issue is that he has been robbed of artistic and technical
control.  That is indeed an issue if it was not James Kass who put the
fonts on SourceForge.  Now, if the font had been released under the SIL
Open Font Licence, he would also have lost control.  One may see the
name 'Code2003' as impertinent, but at least the font is not being
paraded as Code2000, Code 2001 or Code2002.


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